5 characteristics of a great customer support executive

June 29, 2017

Being a support executive is not the easiest job in the world. You’re constantly on your toes, trying to help users in trouble, and worst of all, you often get blamed for things that are not even your fault! Come to think of it, the only time you hear from a customer is when they have a grouse with the service your company provides. So, as you’d expect, things get stressful and exhausting. But you’re also your company’s flag-bearer, who is often the reason a customer becomes a patron.

But what makes for a good support executive? Is it just the executive’s knowledge of the product and service? Or is it a lot more than that? Well, here’s what we think are the 5 traits of a great customer support executive.

1. Has more patience than a meditating monk.

Congratulations, you’ve signed up for a harder job than piloting the space shuttle. Yes, you’ll be talking to users of all types: from experts who just might embarrass you with their knowledge, to technophobics, who you’ll have to hand-hold throughout. And you know what’ll help you more than any training the call centre experts can give? Simple patience.

On a serious note…

We’ll have to admit that customer support executives don’t get enough credit for the patience and politeness they have to show even when being shouted at. You’ll all have heard of cases when a support executive just flips out, yelling back at a customer. You can’t afford to do that. Your company’s reputation rests on your shoulders. It might take time to develop technical skills, but the patience and consideration you show should start from Day 1.

2. Knows what the product is all about.

If you’ve ever called a technical support line to complain about a feature you thought you’d be getting, only to find out it never existed (or if it does exist, the support guy isn’t too sure about it), congratulations, you now know what a support executive has to deal with. This is quite a common occurrence. An overenthusiastic sales staffer might promise the moon, or use language that might not be in sync with the product sheets you’ve been trained on. How does the expert customer support executive deal with such a situation? By making sure he knows more than what the training manual says.

On a serious note…

The training manual often doesn’t cover everything you might be asked to resolve. New features get added and dropped and sometimes the training schedule seems to be running late. You can avoid being in this situation by keeping in touch with the sales personnel to help gauge what customers really want in your product. Simply being aware of what’s being said on social media and reviews about your product might help save you a lot of time while dealing with a customer who can’t explain too well what problems he’s facing.

3. Can keep late hours more suited to a vampire.

Sleep all day, and work all night? Not all tech support jobs are like that, but doesn’t it help to be flexible. Being alert and attentive during the shift, no matter how ungodly it may seem, is a virtue to have.

On a serious note…

More than in other jobs, this is one career where it helps to possess an accommodating temperament. Late nights, awkward shifts and extended hours are a common aspect here, and quick-thinking and focus at all times will keep you in good stead. Think you can’t get used to it? Point 1 helps. Patience: give yourself time, and you’ll be fine. After all, isn’t that how you spent most of your time in college?

4. Reads minds like Sherlock Holmes.

The expert support executive says hello to the customer, and just by the tone of his voice and the way the clouds outside looks, can tell what the problem is. Without the customer needing to say anything about the difficulties they’re facing. A lot like Sherlock Holmes, isn’t it?

On a serious note…

The customer might not always be able to describe their request or any problem they’re facing in an effective manner. And that’s when you come in. Remember the last time you faced a similar issue? Could it be that? Or could this be related to another issue that’s just cropped up recently. A lot of your work goes beyond what the training manual and product data sheet explain.

5. Knows how to de-stress and start again.

Shift over, the customer support executive parties like a film star! Well, more than the party, it’s about taking the time out to get over the day’s stress. Given that your work’s hard and you spend your time resolving problems like a superhero, you deserve to treat yourself.

On a serious note…

When your work’s done, go and do something fun. It could be clubbing with friends, a movie or a nice book. The odd hours of work, dealing with irate customers, racking your brains to resolve issues can be hard and draining. The smart support executive knows that he needs to relax before he can be effective at work.

So, if you are an executive, or manage a team of support executives, share it with them. Or even better, give them a great support tool that’ll make their lives easier and your job more rewarding.

Click Here to get SuperReceptionist.

**Image credit: **www.deiorios.com


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